Obituaries – 11-30-2011

Frank Mesa Almeda

Frank Mesa Almeda, 89, died Nov. 26.

Almeda was a U.S. Army veteran and a longtime resident of Anna Maria Island, where he was a leader of the informal Pier Regulars group.

He is survived by his children, Larry, Dennis, Brenda and Frank Jr.; brother, Lawrence; sister-in-law Marie; grandchildren Lisa, Jessica, Dennis Jr., Michele, Steven and Crystal; 10 great-grandchildren, numerous nieces and nephews and an extended loving family and friends.

A funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, with visitation from noon to 2 p.m., at Hillsboro Memorial Funeral Home, 2323 W. Brandon, Blvd., Brandon.

Entombment will immediately follow at Hillsboro Memorial Gardens.

A full obituary will appear in the Dec. 7 issue of The Islander.


John D. Graham

John D. Graham, 85, of Bradenton, formerly of Indianapolis, died Nov. 25. He was born in Franklin, Ind., March 4, 1926 to Joseph J. and Grace T. (McNair) Graham.

Mr. Walker served in the U.S. Navy and served in the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign until the end of World War II. He retired in 1982 from Stout Field, Indianapolis, where he served as a full time Army National Guard technician for 32 years. He retired in 1986, having served a total of 37 years in the military service.

He retired with his wife to Florida’s Longboat Key/Bradenton area. He liked working with his hands – tiling, painting, woodworking and making things for the children. He loved NASCAR and NFL football.

A visitation for Florida friends was to be held at Shannon Funeral Home, Westview Chapel, 5610 Manatee Ave. W., Bradenton, from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29. Services will be later in Indianapolis. Memorial donations may be made to Tidewell Hospice and Palliative Care, 3355 26th St. W., Bradenton FL 34205. Condolences for the family may be made online at

Mr. Walker is survived by wife Shirley; daughters Sandra L. Faulkner of Bradenton and Teresa L. and husband James Svenstrup of Colleyville, Texas; son Daniel J. of Bradenton; six grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; sister Alice Jean Pearson of Las Vegas; brother Byron E. and wife Doris of Franklin, Ind.; and many beloved nieces, nephews and cousins.


Leslie Hayden Guthrie

Leslie Hayden Guthrie, 97, of Sarasota, died Nov. 19. He was born in Cortez and was a lifelong area resident.

Mr. Guthrie descended from grandparents Capt. James Edward and Charlotte (Foreman) Guthrie, one of five families to first settle in Cortez. The family traces its ancestry to Forfarshire, Scotland, where the imposing Guthrie Castle stands today. The first four brothers arrived in the Unites States in the late 1700s.

Mr. Guthrie was a commercial fisherman. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.

Visitation will be from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2, at Brown & Sons Funeral Homes & Crematory 26th Street Chapel, 5624 26th St. W., Bradenton. A graveside service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 3, at Palma Sola Cemetery, Bradenton.

Memorial contributions may be made to TideWell Hospice, Inc., 5955 Rand Blvd., Sarasota FL 34238. Online condolences may be made at

Mr. Guthrie is survived by daughter Diane L. McAnally of Sarasota and grandsons Geffrey and Jason Leach.


William Arthur ‘Bill’ Riley

William Arthur “Bill” Riley, 86, of Bradenton, died Nov. 19. He was born Oct. 16, 1925, in Parkersburg, W.Va.

Mr. Riley was a painting contractor, a life member of the Painters and Paper Hangers Union and former 570 Union president for Corning Glass Works of Parkersburg. He was an assistant Wood County tax assessor.

He was a lifetime member of the National Horseshoe Pitchers Association, 1973 Florida horseshoe champion, and once held the No. 5 five in the world. He won numerous city, county and district titles.

Mr. Riley served in the U.S. Army during World War II in the European Theater of Operations from 1943-46. He was a lifetime member of the Parkersburg DAV Chapter 6, VFW Post 8199 of Anna Maria Island, American Legion Post 24 of Bradenton, and the Moose Lodge of Bradenton Beach. He was a member and former trustee of the Ellenton United Methodist Church.

Service and burial were in West Virginia. Memorial donations can be made to the Tidewell Hospice & Palliative Care, 5955 Rand Blvd., Sarasota FL 34238.

Mr. Riley is survived by devoted partner of 26 years, Phyllis Williams, of Parrish; children Janet Kerley, Bruce, James, Brenda Sue Riester, Margaret Riester and Karen Roman; 14 grandchildren; 18 great-grandchildren; sister Gloria Purcell of Englewood, Fla.; nephew Danny Purcell; and niece Robbie Proctor.


Donald V. Shea

Donald V. Shea, 84, died Nov. 14. He was born March 22, 1927, in New York City.

Mr. Shea attended Fordham Prep high school and then joined the U.S. Navy Oct. 3, 1944. He was a gunner’s mate, third class, in the Pacific Theater where he earned the Victory Medal, American Theater Medal and Asiatic-Pacific Medal.

He loved skipping stones into the Atlantic Ocean, carving animals out of toast for his grandchildren, tennis, checkers, sailing and the beach.

A service was held Nov. 25 at Guardian Angels Catholic Church in Kansas City, Mo. Memorial donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project at

Mr. Shea is survived by brother Ed of Hilton Head, N.C.; children Patricia Shea and husband Wood Dickinson of Kansas City and Don Shea of Holmes Beach; grandchildren Matt and wife Miranda, Elizabeth, Claire and husband Kyle Perkins, Kathleen, Mary, Andrew, Meghan and Margaret; and great-grandchildren Jordan, Jalyn, Georgia, Piper, Lucy, Ben and Charlotte.

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